New Delhi: MMRCA Contract to Finalize ‘Within a Month’

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RAFAEL and Mirage 2000 fighter jets operating with the French Air Force and Navy are currently employed with laser designation pods and DAMOCLES targeting pods, both produced by Thales. The company is now contracted to develop the next generation targeting pod for these aircraft. Photo: French Air Force

Following months of negotiations, the Indian Ministry of Defense is set to sign a US$11 billion contract with French aviation company Dassault within a month, for the procurement of 126 Rafale Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA). The delivery of the first 36 French aircraft will commence in 2017 with follow-on aircraft planned for assembly in India. During the months of negotiations rumors said the deal could collapse due to disagreement on costs and terms, leading to the selection of EADS’s Eurofighter, the second lowest bidder, by default.